With winter steelhead season nearly here, I have been tying up a storm getting ready for the ghosts of winter to arrive. Over the years I find myself using more and more synthetics because they allow for tying a fly with a large profile without casting like a wet sock. Many are also tying and fishing flies upwards of six inches and while I rarely go this big, keeping your flies sparse and using synthetics can add movement and make casting much more enjoyable. Here are a few materials I have geeked on lately...
Foxx (Craft) Furr
This stuff can be used in many different ways and can be wrapped, spun, (or dare I say it) bunch tied. It comes in way too many colors and does not bleed. I have been having fun spinning it in dubbing loops and substituting it for marabou.
This is nothing new, but has all the good qualities in a steelhead tying material. It's lightweight and has a little flash and a lot of movement. I like to wrap this through the body of many flies instead of hackle.
Flashabou and Angel Hair
Both are offered in a variety of colors and add movement and flash for more steelhead appeal.
Then there are always the natural materials that I can't do without.
Arctic Fox Tails
Lady Amherst Tails and Tippets
Marabou(I am starting to like the barred stuff but wish the stems were a little longer!)
I know I am forgetting some, but these are just a few that came to mind. Would love to hear of any other cool stuff you out there like to use as well.